Another Year.

Another birthday come and gone. And it was…um…there are no words, actually. I received a few shocks that, frankly, I could have lived without.

But at least I got my pen.

pen-type-a-doodle

I’m quite excited about it, and I think I have an unhealthy obsession with taking the pen out of its holder just so I can watch it slowly slide back down into it–it really is that cool—and I’m grateful to the fine folks at CW&T for making it all possible.

When my life calms to relative normal and after some renovations of my stationery addiction site, I’ll post a proper and full review of the pen.

Happy Valentine’s Day

I finished all the Valentine’s day cards and got them mailed out in the nick of time. But I realize there are many people whose addresses I don’t know, so I decided to make a special card for them, too.

Enjoy a giant cupcake...

Unfortunately, all the nifty shiny doesn’t quite show up in the picture, but pretend it’s there.

I’ll also forgo the annual love poem (mostly because I’m too lazy to get up and select one), but I’ll urge you to think love-ful thoughts all day.

Aw hell, I can’t break tradition

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Sugar is sweet
And so are you.

(I knew that one by heart.)

New Holiday Traditions…Starting with Valentine’s Day

Valentine's Day Card from several years ago

While I was spring cleaning (I figured I’d get a jump on it…), I found a Valentine’s Day card I’d made for my sister. It made me smile and it made her laugh, especially considering she hadn’t lived at the address on the envelope for several years.

As Valentine’s Day looms ever closer I remembered that card and wondered, “Why did I stop making those again?” In fact, I had always made small cards and homemade gifts for my family and friends for the major holidays…and it always made me feel good (along with, I hope, the people who received them).

Working Valentine's Day Card Line Art

So today I cleared a few hours from my schedule to start that tradition back up again. I’ve created my mailing list, gathered together my sketchbook and art supplies, and I’m hunkering down to make some magic.

This year, though, I’m going for something a bit different. Instead of signing every card, I’m thinking of doing general love cards which can then be passed on to others. I figure that way the love can keep on spreading.

Now if I can just nail down a basic design…hmmm.

Valentine's Day card sketch and finished product

(The picture above is the card I designed for one of my sisters. After finishing though, I might just keep it for myself.)

Writing on Bananas

Or, rather, drawing on banana paper. And I lurve it.

Banana Paper Company small blank journal

It was sitting on my pile of notebooks and journals and I thought, “Self, drawing on trees is so passé.” So, I took out my ink and watercolors and flipped open the small blank journal. (My first illustration turned out to be an homage to my high school painting “Trail of Forgotten Souls”.)

Screaming Head Homage

When it came time to paint I was rather surprised at how well it handled the water. Sure it warped the pages underneath it (no big deal for me), but it didn’t turn into mush like some notebooks would. I was even able to re-wet a few sections.

pearl-eyed-girl

The only problems I’ve run into were some of the more solid flecks lifting up or chipping away from the paper while writing. Also, once the book has been held open for any length of time, it tends to stay open (hence the binder clip in the first picture). Neither of these things I mind very much.

Even though the paper is a pale brown color, it’s best used with dark or bright ink colors. That means pastel colored inks are a no-go, 2H lead was nearly invisible, and even HB was difficult to read. And for all its strength and durability, the paper is thin enough for you to see what’s on the other side, but the ink doesn’t actually bleed through.

screaming-head-homage-backside
(Click on the image for a full size view with more detail.)

Right now, I’m content using the small blank journal as an art journal. It started with a single sentence with an accompanying inspired image and I’ve just continued with that theme. I flip to a random blank page, draw a preliminary sketch, and then paint. I may even add some collage in the future. (I’ve always wanted to get into collage, but I just never had a true knack for it.)

Oh, and the paper is acid free. (At least, that’s the claim anyway. I haven’t tested it. Maybe I should.) And these journals can be purchased at Target.

Jan. 2011 Artist Trading Cards

My blog is lonely. I should rectify that.

This year I started off on a creative kick, trying out some new artistic styles. Figured I’d post them up. (They’re already in my FB album and deviantART gallery.)

sorrow_by_nailetvoodoo_by_nailetpeekaboo_by_nailetsharing_secrets_by_nailet

(My scanning capabilities are questionable, but I’m sure they will improve over the year.)

Clockwise from the top left:

  • Sorrow: I was listening to a weepy song when I drew this one, hence the title. Plus, she does look a bit sorrowful.
  • Lady Luck’s Abused Ragdoll: This title evolved many times and I’m not even certain it will stay with its current appellation.
  • Peekaboo: I was feeling surreal that day. And I wanted to use colored pencils.
  • Sharing Secrets: My sister ended up liking this one so I created a larger version for her birthday. (Took close to forever, but I love her, so it’s OK.)

Each of the drawings measures only 2.5”x3.5”—the size of a trading card—and took under an hour to finish. I think that’s why I enjoy making them as much as I do. But, to be completely honest, I’m ready to start working on larger drawing projects again.

The Long and Painful Birth of Dean Kane Dean Christian Christian Kane Fan Art Part 1

(This was originally published on Facebook, but since someone decided to delete her FB account, I’m also publishing it here.)

Christian Kane Drawing
(Title: Sketchbook Dump #13 (or, Unfinished Sketch of Christian Kane as a Shirtless Avenging Angel). Sorry for the watermark, but you know how TehInternetz can be. Also, sorry for the crappy scan.)

Now for the explanation…

I’m not big on doing fan art that doesn’t involve fictional anime characters. The last one I did was of Aaliyah when she was still alive, if that says anything.

But, one morning at God-Isn’t-Even-Awake-Yet o’clock my phone rings. It’s my friend J, but let’s call her Bucket o’ Crazy (BoC for short), who says, “You have to check your email right now!!!!1!! *squee*”

Me: (still half asleep) What’s email?
BoC: NOW!

Thinking that the world is on fire, I reluctantly check my email to find a crapload of pictures.

Me: You woke me up at this unholy hour to look at pics of some random guy?!?
BoC: It’s not some random guy, it’s Christian Kane and I need you to draw him.
Me: The glue you’ve been sniffing must have gone bad.
BoC: With wings.

*longpause*

At this point I should have known better. I should have rolled over, gone back to sleep, and left it alone. But damn my curious nature.

Me: Why with wings?
BoC: Because he kind of looks like an avenging angel, doesn’t he?

*anotherpause* As I stare blankly at the computer screen.

Me: Er…um…since when do avenging angels wear Stetsons?

*yetanotherlongpause*

BoC: And he has to be shirtless.
Me: He has to be…oh sweet baby jeebus and all that is good and sane, WHY?!?
BoC: Because he’s so pretty.

(Here, my darlings, is where I do you a kindness and remove the portion of the conversation that centered on his hair for 10 minutes.)

Me: o_0 … if I agree to do this will you hang up and let me go back to sleep?
BoC: I know what you’re trying to do and it’s not going to work.

Knowing that arguing would be no use, I set the phone down, went to make myself a pop tart and poured some juice. When I returned, bless her sweet little heart, she was still going on about hunting me down or kidnapping my first born or some such nonsense.

Me: If you stop, I’ll draw your damn picture of Dean Kane, shirtless with wings.
BoC: CHRISTIAN!
Me: Sorry, Dean Christian.
BoC: You and I are no longer friends.
Me: Seriously? Does that mean I don’t have to draw the picture?
BoC: No.
Me: But you said we weren’t friends. Hehe.
BoC: STFU and draw!

Yeah, I’m also wondering why the hell I’m still friends with her too. ;)

And J, before you beg me to finish it, I don’t like how it’s turning out, so for now it’ll just be a stub. Maybe, in the future, if I feel so inclined, I may start over and do an illustration that I’ll ink/color in Painter…maybe.

Valentine’s Day Edition

Since it’s almost Valentine’s Day and since I haven’t changed the header on this site in a very very long time, I’ve decided that it would be the perfect opportunity to dust off my sketch book.

The header image is actually my first Photoshop painting using my new Wacom Intuos3 Special Edition graphics tablet. I scanned a sketch I made, then worked in over until it had the feel I was going for. It’s not exactly as I want it, but I’m happy with what I have so far.

In time, painting with the tablet will become more natural (I’m already in love) and I’ll probably start showcasing my sketches and painting here. It’s the perfect place and a perfect way to revive my long neglected blog.

Scarred.

Yay, I found it.

Scarred
Scarred was done with #2 pencil and drawn in 9th grade, if I’m not mistaken.

Though it’s not one of my best drawings, it’s always been one of my favorites.

Now, before you think that I was always an utterly unhappy youth, I present you with Planet Happy Face:
Planet Happy Face

I actually remember painting this in 7th grade and it hung on my bedroom door through 10th grade.

I’m having tons of fun going through my old art work. It brings back so many memories; some good, some not so good, but I still enjoy the process.

Disturbing.

So, I’m going through some of my old things (spring cleaning…a little late) and lookie what I found:
Head engulfed in flames, zombies walking down trail of tears

It’s called Trail of Forgotten Souls and I must have been slightly upset when I painted it in 11th grade. Of course, it did win an award and someone offered me $75 for it, so I guess it couldn’t be that bad.

In case you missed it, those are little dead souls walking on a trail of tears from a head which is engulfed in flames.

There’s one I distinctly remember (and loved) called Scarred. I hope to find it soon…if I do, I’ll post a pic of it.

Oh, and if you even care what my old AP Portfolio classroom looked like, here you go:
My old art classroom
(This was the product of boredom.)